When small children are asked what they’d like to be when they grow up, their answers tend to be simple and heroic–a doctor, a firefighter, an astronaut–jobs that are found more frequently in the popular imagination.And while some people do grow up to fulfill those early desires, most head in other directions.
And so while it would be pretty rare to find a young child dreaming up their future in supply chain and logistics, it is a career that more and more people are considering. Even if, until recently with the explosion of eCommerce, these job titles have remained somewhat under the radar not just for very young kids, but also for college students and recent grads as well.
As the world and its many technologies and economies grow increasingly complex and eCommerce more a part of daily life, work is rapidly changing in the field of supply chain and logistics. Many jobs in the industry require a never-before-seen level of specialization to meet the increasingly complicated demands seen in supply chain management.
Which is why it’s important for industry leaders to take seriously the underwhelming representation of qualified people who are considering well-paying jobs in supply chain and logistics.
Logisticians are needed in almost every industry. A fast-paced, high-pressure job, a logistician manages all the elements in an organization’s supply chain from acquisition and distribution to allocation and delivery. Whether it’s computers, vinyl records or track suits, a logistician coordinates how a product gets from its maker to its consumer.
In the past, supply chain managers and logisticians merely made sure a product got from point A to point B in the time it was supposed to. In the 21st century, that simplicity has left the building.
Today, successful supply chain and logistics managers must also take into account productivity, efficiency, quality control, technology and the global marketplace. Smart and flexible people are needed, and they must also be trained well.
With the Bureau of Labor Statistics projecting the next 10 years’ demand for logisticians to increase over 22 percent, the question must be asked: Who in the world will fill those 150,000 jobs?
One way to potentially address the shortage of qualified logisticians is to offer scholarships in supply chain and logistics degrees at the college level. Rasmussen College, a regionally accredited and private college with locations in six states, is trying just that.
They not only offer a Supply Chain and Logistics Management Bachelor’s degree, but they’ve made that degree even more attractive with a scholarship opportunity. The Supply Chain and Logistics Management Scholarship reduces the cost of tuition to students awarded it by as much as $4,000. The hope is that the appeal of the award and the lowered price tag will get even better students interested in the degree and the career path.
It remains to be seen whether or not the scholarship approach will work. After all, the scholarship opportunity through Rasmussen College has just gotten underway.
Regardless, for the global economy to continue its breakneck pace in technology, distribution, freight and transportation, something must be done to broaden the appeal of keeping products moving along the world’s corridors.
One thing is clear: Talent in the field is sorely needed, and the sweetening effects of a scholarship just might be enough to begin to make a dent in the coming boom in logistics jobs.
If you need a partner to help you strategically manage and successfully move your products out of the port and onto their final destination, be sure to download our latest eBook — Speeding Time-To-Shelf and Cutting Costs — a must read for today’s Logistics Managers.